Pierre Chapo 'R08' Sideboard in Solid Elm
Pierre Chapo, sideboard, model 'R08', elm, France, circa 1964.
This R08 cabinet is one of the early editions designed by Pierre Chapo, known for his hallmark use of solid elmwood and a commitment to pure and clean design and construction principles. This exquisitely crafted credenza combines a simplified yet complex design combined with nifty, solid construction details that characterize Chapo's work. The well-proportioned doors and drawers are geometric and identical. This is in contrast with the asymmetric composed drawers, where the left drawer is narrow and the right drawer wide. Yet together, it forms a unified whole.
Pierre Chapo (1927-1987) was born in a family of craftsmen and trained as an architect at the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts in Paris. Already from a young age, he felt the need to roam the world. He was only 21 when he left France in order to spend the next few years traveling through England and Scandinavia. In December of 1951, he was living back in Paris, where he met his future wife, Nicole. Their meeting was the beginning of a lifelong union. Together, the lovebirds travelled through South and North America being captivated by the architectural diversity. Back in France, he and his partner Nicole set up Société Chapo in 1957. Société Chapo was a design workshop and gallery in one where he showed his own creations. However, Nicole also presented her ceramics, textiles here and they even exhibited other great designers of that period. In 1958, they opened their famous gallery at 14 Boulevard de l'Hopital. Chapo's work originated by means of special commissions that could later be adapted to universal needs. Throughout his career, Chapo combined his interest for contemporary design with his love for traditional craftmanship. In his designs, he was inspired by Frank Lloyd Wright's balanced lines, Corbusier's research on proportions and the ideas of Bauhaus. The three principles that motivated Pierre Chapo were 'material, form, and function.' He measured his furniture by means of golden ratio and used elmwood as his preferred material. Unfortunately, Chapo fell ill, and he died in 1987, however, until his last day, he kept on designing and working.
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